Energy-Efficient Homes

January/February 2011
A version of this article appears in the January/February 2011 issue of Home Energy Magazine.
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January 05, 2011
Houston may be a standout in the market, but it seems that energy efficiency programs and DOE standards are lifting all homes to better efficiency.
Metropolitan Houston, Texas, has become one of the largest markets in the country for new-housing construction, with more than 350,000 new-home starts since 2000. Houston was an early adopter of the Energy Star label and currently has one of the highest market shares in the nation, with approximately 50% of new homes in 2008 certified as Energy Star. As the market share of Energy Star homes grew in Houston, some builders began to look for new ways of differentiating their homes. The guaranteed-performance labels from various organizations provided them with the opportunity to take a step beyond Energy Star in terms of energy performance, but without having to sacrifice many of the benefits they received from their participation in the Energy Star program.

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